tv Charlie Rose PBS July 27, 2010 12:00pm-1:00pm EDT
welcome to the program, tonight we talk about the the disclosure of documents about afghanistan with two new york times reporters. and david remnick and roger angell talk about sportswriting for the new yorker magazine and the movie dinner for schmucks with steve carell, paul rudd and the director jay roach. >> rose: afghanistan, baseball and other writing in the new yorker and a new movie when we continue. >> funding for charlie rose was provided by the following.
captioning sponsored by rose communications from our studios in new york city, this is charlie rose. at the unprecedented disclosure of classified military documents pertaining to the war in afghanistan. more than 90,000 documents were released to the web site wicky leaks, "the new york times", to the guardian and the german magazine were given access to the records weeks ago. "the new york times" published its account on line yesterday and in today's paper. the mostly ground level field reports span the years from 2004 to 2009, they give evidence of a strengthened taliban, persistent afghan understandings and afghan military with divided loyalties, the leak forced the white house to defend its white house strategy, once again after it replaced stanley mcchrystal with
petraeus as the top commander, earlier today the press secretary robert gibbs was repeatedly asked about the matter. >> a couple of times now you said in the last couple of moments that a lot of this information is not really new, that u.s. government officials have said some of in same information. >> yes. i said ther there weren't any nw revelations in the material. >> how about our national security if we knew this already? >> well, because you have got -- it is no not the content as much as it is there are names, there are operations, there are logistics, there are sources, all of that information out in a public way has the potential to do harm. >> made it a point that wiki is not an objective news outlet but an organization that opposes u.s. policy in afghanistan, could you explain how that is relevant to the accuracy of the documents. >> i think that the -- i think that the founder of wiki leaks
if i read the interviews correctly today comparing troops in afghanistan to the secret east german police is certainly something that we would fundamentally disagree with and something that has somebody that clearly has an agenda. >> rose: joining us now, two coauthors of the new york story, chief correspondent in pakistan, eric submit, the terrorism correspondent i am pleased to have both of them back on this program. what is the most damaging thing here with respect to the war? >> i think it is the volume of the documents. it is a record of a pattern of a war in afghanistan that is incredibly difficult for a number of reasons that we all know of, corruption, culture clash, in ability of the american soldiers to prosecute
the war because of the deftness of the taliban, their knowledge of the terrain, their financial backing and i think it also confirms the value of the safe havens in pakistan for the afghan taliban. >> rose: are there talk among source this is will cause them to look at this policy again? >> well, clearly they are looking at this policy clearly they have done two major reviews, one in march of last year, one in december, and the president gave his speech at west point and they are due for another one at the end of this year with the comu new commander david petraeus charged with providing an assessment by december of the progress that they have made in advance of the decision that already has been announced to begin withdrawing american forces from afghanistan next july. so i think, i don't think you are going to see any major review before that period, but it certainly is going to affect what general petraeus is going to be doing in the field as well as what senior policy makers
here in washington will be doing to influence that and perhaps most important it may well influence senator kerry said how congress views this right now. there is an important war financing bill before the house of representatives this week. the new commander for the central command will have a hearing tomorrow before the armed services committee in the senate, general jim mad diswho is replacing general david petraeus as head of the central command, no one is expecting that confirmation hearing or the war financing bill to go awry but it is putting more and more focus on this policy in what is going right and what may not be going so well at all. >> rose: i assume what the administration would worry about is a building pressure against the war as they are trying to move ahead to the december reevaluation. >> that's right. i mean, one thing that these commanders or general mcchrystal or general petraeus has never had a whole lot of and that is time, time to show the kind of progress they need to demonstrate to the american public, to european allies, to
the civilians on the ground in afghanistan that there is some kind of strategy is working. this is probably going to accelerate that process right now and put more pressure on the commanders in the field to show results, even as they are just now getting the last of the troops the surge called for, they will be coming in by the end of august. so it is putting that much more pressure on petraeus to show what the military can do in the field and almost certainly underscore the limitations of what military alone can do in afghanistan. >> rose: let me cover one thing, you covered pakistan on the isi. >> yes. >> rose: my impression was that because of general can i annie and others that the isi was changing a bit, that they were not as pro islamist as they might have been? >> well, i think like many spy organizations in developing
countries the isi is not a monolithic organization and i think that the american -- the americans mullen and the other commanders have had a pretty good relationship with can i annie kiani but we have to remember kiani was head of the isi when a lot of this stuff was going on, when the afghan taliban were going over into afghanistan and where they continued to do, and kiani made it perfectly clear the afghan taliban is an asset of pakistan, and they think it is a very important asset, because when the end game is over in afghanistan, the afghan taliban should have full pakistan, the kind of communicates in southern afghanistan, and i think we are rather naive to think that the pakastanis are ever going to give up -- >> rose: and they can't do anything about the kiani network. >> absolutely, and i don't think
they ever will, why should they from the pakastani point of view they need the afghan taliban because they see india coming into afghanistan and they feel they need a counter against india in afghanistan, so it is pakistan and southern afghanistan, roughly speaking and india, perhaps, having influence in the north. and the afghan taliban, the pakistan's proxies. >> rose: general petraeus, is he going to change anything about the mcchrystal strategy? >> i think what is going to happen is general petraeus is obviously doing an assessment of all aspects of the policy on the ground to see where things may be tweaked. i don't think you are going to see any major changes at this point. i think in terms of candle hear there will be a continued and renewed focus on some kind of political settlement within the city itself and working with the various factions to try and do that. outside of the city i think you are going to see perhaps accelerated efforts by the
military outside to try and cut down some of the taliban networks, and i think specifically some of the -- some of the commando operations that have been going on very quietly but very efficiently, ruthlessly efficiently in going after taliban leadership and these are the special operations forces that are trying to go after some of the taliban leadership who believe that they are winning and on the ground have no real reason to negotiate. well if some of these special operations forces are coming after them and in a meaningful enough way in a deadly enough way maybe this will force more of them to the bargaining table. that's the philosophy at least, so i am not sure you will see all of the military involvement -- it won't be quite as evident there but i think you will also see more of a political dynamic playing out again because of this compressed time pressure that they are operating under. hopefully you have a sense here in washington that even the
white house is looking for an exit faster than they might have been before. there always have been doubts by some that president obama is truly committed to staying in afghanistan as he said, and so these -- the kind of pressure that is being placed by the release and disclosure of these documents may put more pressure on that and they elevate for instance the position vice president biden who has long advocated a more limited american presence in afghanistan, special operations presence to go after al qaeda should they return, so i think all of these dynamics now are being act is 7 twaited be at this release of these documents. >> rose: will you hear from general mcchrystal really understood the necessity of building up support, to create some kind of sustaining force that could give some security in the regions. is that impossible based on what you see? >> well -- >> in any kind of reasonable time frame? >> i am not an afghanistan expert but i think the key, one of the keys of the policy is
depending of training of the afghan national army and we are spending, started spending $4 billion a month, a huge burn rate on the amount of money we are spending on training the afghan army, this is a very tough job, and i think it is very difficult, and i think that the pakastanis see their opening, i think they think also it is very difficult for the americans to train up the afghan national army to a point where they can take over, and i think the pakastanis believe that the americans don't have the staying power to stay in afghanistan, and they will leave and the afghan army somehow will be asked to take over and will not be able to, and that will be pakistan's moment, i am not going to say they will walk in and take over pakistan, far from it but i think the pakastanis feel a strong negotiating position in the end game in afghanistan. >> rose: as you said earlier in this conversation, the afghan taliban as their surrogates. >> absolutely. >> rose: do you agree with that, eric?
>> absolutely, that long has been the position right here now, and i think in addition as you mentioned before, not only the afghan taliban but the ikani network, these are two longstanding factions of the militancy that pakastani taliban have influence over. the question is how much longer they will have that kind of influence. i think the longer time goes on perhaps the more attenuated that influence may become. if you look at the afghan taliban, for instance, their leadership has been based out of qatar pakistan for some time now yet you have younger more aggressive leaders on the ground in southern afghanistan who aren't always willing to take orders anymore from the shura as they call it in southern pakistan so i think there is also a sense that the time is right to move on a deal like this before the taliban leadership becomes too fractured. >> rose: so the people who push most for some kind of deal right now are the pakastanis?
>> i think they see as jane said a strategic opening here both in what is going on in terms of the taliban leadership, in terms of where the american commitment may be, and their own. i think you see a confluence of events they see this is the right time to make their move. >> rose: you were going to say? >> one thing we haven't discussed is actually what president obama has said is the ultimate goal is the main goal of this war which is to defeat al qaeda. and that is kind of the elephant in the room. money talks about that, but that is the american goal is not to build schools or build, you know, a new nation in afghanistan. it is to make sure that al qaeda doesn't exist in afghanistan, so that they can wreak havoc on europe or the united states or elsewhere. now, the al qaeda is aligned, is part of the hakani network, if that could be separated from al
qaeda, then there would be some progress and i think maybe what the americans are talking to the pakastanis about is, can you help us? can you separate the hakanis from al qaeda? i think it is a tall order, but maybe they are trying. >> rose: let me make sure i understand this. the united states government's official position is we are only here because of al qaeda? >> i think i it has to be the bottom line otherwise the united states will be in afghanistan forever, how are we ever going to build a country that is basically very, very lacking in development, it takes hundreds of years for the united states to be there to build the so-called nation. i don't think that is on the table. i mean you may disagree. >> rose: do you, eric? >> no, i think that is basically what it is, what you have is the president basically outlined his commitment to with go after al qaeda but the problem is al qaeda is in pakistan, it is in the tribal areas, of pakistan right now the united states has got a couple of options in doing this, they go after, they go
after al qaeda with these predator drone strikes which are not popular in pakistan, and at the same time they are trying to build up the pakastani military in terms of their training. training emphasized getting more troops out, training in counter-terrorism tactics but the pakastanis, you know, there is a limit on how much american assistance they will take, anti-americanism is running extremely high in pakistan, and so there is frustration on the american side, the pakastanis aren't doing as much as they could. despite clear advances they have done in the last year in going after some of the militancy in places like south waziristan, they have a long way to go. >> we have to realize, i think the pakastanis have given the amount of -- the americans quite a bit, what have they given the americans? they have given them quiet permission against the will of the people to use the drones in their territory. >> rose: right. >> drones go over the tribal areas south of waziristan, north
waziristan on a regular basis and under the obama administration those strikes have increased and they have been very successful in knocking out what are believed to be al qaeda operatives, arabs and others. that is quite a big deal. that helps us in the american goal. so i don't think you can ask for everything. >> rose: so it is a very tenuous relationship but we are getting something from it? >> the other thing that we are getting from pakistan is basically a secure route from karachi through the khyber pass for all of the clothes, all of the water, all of the vehicles, all of the necessity day to day living things that nato and american soldiers need to fight the war. >> right, right. >> so two big deals. >> rose: i thank you very much. thank you, eric. >> thank you, charlie. great to see you. ♪ >> rose: for nine decade it is new yorker magazine has been home to some of the tifs,
wisest, most moving sports commentator anywhere, it is profiled legend from ted williams to michael jordan and captured the wonders of ping-pong and dog sledding, the only game in town sportswriting from the new yorker is an anthology of 32 notable essays, joining me now is david remnick, he edited the book and editor of the magazine since 1998 and also with us roger angell first wrote for the new yorker in february of 1944, his name has become synonymous with baseball. he is a sportswriting legend. he hates hearing that. nevertheless i am still pleased to have him back at this table. so this is, just think about in this is the people who have written for this anthology, they wrote it for the new yorker, roger angell on ron darling and frank viola, the great college baseball game between st. john's and yale when darling was pitching, john chief on -- and
son and baseball, nancy franklin on ping-pong. on michael jordan, it just goes on and on, until you get to john updike on ted williams final red sox appearance. >> written on the weekend. >> rose: he said that, is that right? >> roger knows that story. roger was editor for years and years. he went to that game by accident. as you said in the forward to a later edition he had an assignation with a lady who didn't turn up, and he went to -- the red sox were a terrible team then and he went to fenway park, bought a ticket and wawld walked in and noticed ted williams last game to be played at fenway park and he hits the last home run of his career and john went home and wrote the piece, but wrote a whole new style, writing about baseball. >> rose: what was the new style? >> wrote about himself and to
write about the, not to write in a sporting way but to write about what he thought about ted williams, to start with, and just to be himself as a great writer. and i think roger said, you know, one piece. roger made it his lifework or a huge part of his lifework to be a writer about baseball and a lot of it is the point of view, and the point of view is from the stands rather than a press box, rather than the kind of surrounded by jock fever in the locker room. >> rose: is there anybody who wrote about this that didn't like athletics and sports and -- >> i think you have to have some passion for what you are writing about. i don't think the new yorker, i have to admit there is some slyness about this enterprise, the new yorker may be money for a lot of things but sportswriting with the huge exception of boxing angell on baseball and maybe to some extent some lesser lights on
college football and a few other things, that we are not really known for this, and yet when you go overtime, there have been some spectacular examples of sportswriting. we don't cover sports. in other words, we don't have somebody in the press box for every game for the giants or the yankees or the san francisco 49ers but we pick our spots, the coverage is left to newspapers and now the great behemoth of sports is espn, that is what owns sports but nancy frankly for example who is a spectacular writer, and who has an in imable voice just got interesting in ping-pong .. >> she was a great ping-pong player because her father when she was a child played the home game of ping-pong, fathers are very important in sports. >> rose: and the father's knee is born the passion of sports. >> absolutely. >> rose: why did you choose this piece by roger on ron darling -- >> the book is dedicated to are
jerry and the preface i wrote is largely about meeting roger for the first time when i was an intern at the washington post. >> rose: yes. >> and roger was on book tour, promote ago book called late innings, not so late it turns out, and if he was terrifying to me because he was really one of the big figures that i have to say, that i grew up reading. >> rose: right. >> so it g gave me really a special pleasure to do this and i admit i asked roger which pieces did he like? and i think he got, i think maybe he got tired of seeing a certain piece anthologized all the time called gone for good. >> rose: right. >> a profile of steve blass a pitcher for the pittsburgh pirates who was a fantastic pitcher and all of a sudden loses it and roger explores the psychological dimensions of this, of losing it suddenly, and that had been anthologized a lot and a few others had too and i think one of the contests that
is one of roger's great pieces is called agincourt. >> heroic play-off battle with the red sox and the mets, this one, what i love about this is the interplay what is on the field and what is in the stands and so roroger sitting there with smoke which joe i should let him tell you about this. >> this is my best day on any baseball game as a writer. because i had gone to see this game because i heard about these two great young pitchers ron darling and frank viola, yale against saint johns an early round ncaa elimination game and i remember smoky joe woods who had been the yale coach for 24 years and had been the one of the best known pitchers of his day, 1912 and won 34 games for the red sox, was living in new haven at the age of 91 and i managed to invite him, i didn't know him to come to the game,
and we watched this game together and in the middle of it, ron darling was throwing a no-hitter and threw 11, ten hitter no-hitter and lost in the 11th inning and joe, the best college game i ever saw so i had a pretty good idea what to write about that day. >> rose: best college game you had ever seen. where does your love of sports come from? >> you know, i grew up on it. i mean i love this kind of magnificent meaninglessnesness,i watch it all too much now, even now sometimes i will have the yankee game on with no sounds and going through manuscripts or doing some work. i wouldn't, you know, necessarily recommend spending that much time on it, but i really do, and when i began as a newspaper reporter, the only spot zero open for me at the table was as a sports reporter, and think thought expertise was the thing and i just loved it
because it gave you something to write about that had a kind of -- it got you all over the country, you got to meet different kinds of people, the games were a challenge to write something new about all the time, i covered the team that was then called the washington bullets, now the washington wizards, i covered boxing which nobody cared about and probably at this point it is in defensible. >> rose: speaking of boxing .. it is the rocky marciano archie moore, tell me about it. >> well, i think david should tell you. >> what i can say is that he hated baseball, he hated it, didn't know anything about it and there was a moment early 62, 1963 when he was waiting for a fight in san francisco, and the world series was delayed and delayed and delayed, and finally got played and there was the
giants and the yankees, and there was a line drive last out of, hit a screaming line drive and people kept saying if the ball had been hit a foot higher there or a foot this way he said there are no ifs in boxing. >> how did you get started writing sports? >> william shawn said we had sports in the magazine in 1962, i guess, and he whenever was a baseball fan would you like to go to spring training and see what comes of this and i said, free trip to florida, i said sure. and he said, we don't want sentimental sweet stuff, we don't want the tough guy stuff either. and i was terrified. i was too afraid to touch the ball players. i was in my 30s, actually, and it happened that year, i came back and wrote that screen piece and the first toyota of the
mets, just starting up, created the team and played at the polo grounds one of the worst teams ever and this following, this immense wonderful following of the mets because they won now and then and when the yankees had been winning and winning and winning and they would come up to the games and bring plastic foghorns and blow it -- but the yankees and it was great, i sat in the stands and wrote about the fans, i think that was something new. i was there as myself as a fan and i wrote about we, something a happening in the stands as well as in the fields. >> rose: you may not know this. i did a series of conversations with ted williams way back for night watch which was a show on cbs before you were born. >> right. >> rose: and i ran into williams and got to know williams and roger, and i got williams and we had these wonderful conversations about
hitting and about everything else, and he autographed a baseball for me and i was telling roger about it and roger said i have never, ever asked anybody to autograph anything, but he took a baseball to ted williams and said, this is for my son. >> for my son and i said, he gave me the time of day in spring training and he was an old guy teaching hopeless young players and picked up a ball and dusted it off and said, i have a nine-year-old son at home and he, no response, and i said, and john henry, you have a son named john henry yes, i do and he said i have a son named john henry and it was a bond and we became friends. >> rose: this is called the only game in time, sports writing from the new yorker, from these great authors. it is a great piece. >> a sthrie little piece. >> rose: sly little piece indeed. anthony laker wrote the only
game in time, racetrack, the famous piece by a sense of where you are with bill bradley. >> first new yorker piece. and a real masterpiece. >> rose: it is. >> bill at his height. >> as good as he was on the knicks and really -- supreme college ball. >> rose: he was indeed. so politics for a moment while i have roger here. so obama. having read the book and having seen -- what do you make of this? >> i think it is axiomatic going into an off year election a congressional election this coming november, when unemployment is still close to ten percent and we are fighting a war in afghanistan that is so god forsaken and these papers that have come out, wonderful profile of this guy for wiki leaks and i think the times and
guardian and did a great job of summarizing this -- what is in it but we know what is happening. we have an extremely unreliable ally in cab bull, extremely unreliable ally in pakistan, a very difficult military mission that obama does not seem to have his heart in as well as other people. yet a lot of people who understand very well why we got into this in the first place really are asking themselves in the most serious way, what the hell are we still doing there? it is a very, very difficult time and at the same time you have a republican party who is trying like crazy not to do anything serious about a very serious problem to the point where while the earth is over heating and we are not just seeing think summer but the science is incontrovertible, refuses to engage in a climate bill, a really serious energy bill, it is just off the table until after the election, god
knows, afterwards, so when you say what about obama? it is a larger picture. his legislative achievements in healthcare are enormous, he gets no credit for it. financial reform, and gets no credit for it. it is a puzzle. >> rose: what do you think of the presidency of barack obama? >> i am still very impressed with him. it is still a miracle not just to have an african-american president but an intellectual president and not very many and i think by the time the election comes along we may be taking a different look at all of this, it is hard to say, the midterm election is always looks dire and less affected me. >> rose: thank you, roger. thank you, david. >> thank you. >> rose: dinner for schmucks is one of the most anticipated comedies of this summer season, it is a steve carell, paul rudd,
the pair worked direct previously on anchorman and 40 year virgin which became surprise blockbuster here is a look at the trailer for dinner for schmucks. >> in a secret location, they are extraordinary. yet their identities are unknown. but in 2010, we will witness that power. >> i have laid eggs inside of your brain! get them out of my head! >> i have brain control over you! bing. >> you invite idiots to dinner and make fun of them? >> mmm -- >> that is messed up. >> where are you from? >> we are from switzerlander land. >> switzerland, i love your cheese with the holes.
>> he is a tornado of destruction. i don't have any trouble describing what i am looking a at. i want you out of the apartment. >> oh, my god. >> he is friends with morgan freeman! >> i don't want to cramp your style. >> it is already cramped. >> i am a trained taxidermist and i am alive! >> are you looking down my dress? >> no. please don't embarrass me. >> i am not doing it. bing,bing. >> best dinner ever. >> rose: the movie is a remake of the french film the dinner game which was released in 1998, joining me now is steve carell, paul rudd and the film's director jay roach i am glad to have them here, welcome great to
see you. you guys, how did this work so well and what is it that makes it successful? >> oh, gosh, okay, well, you know, i have always loved working with steve, i think we hit it off right away. on anchorman just from a personal friendship developed and i guess overtime you just get to know somebody a little bit better and it becomes easier to, you know, do a scene or improviser whatever it is. >> rose: it is rhythm and things like that? >> yes. and just having an awareness of the other person's sensibilities. i know like i don't want to interrupt too soon because i know steve is going to keep going with something and i thik that just kind of comes with working together a lot. >> rose: steve? >> no. i agree. i think it is a a matter of trust too. it is a matter of knowing each other's rhythms but also, you know, a matter of respect and we are very close physically in
this movie. there is a large percentage of the movie where we invade each other's space and we are completely comfortable with that and i think that just comes with time too. >> rose: what do you any? >> they have an incredible energy. my favorite thing is to let them sort of try to make each other laugh, and i can always tell, you know, you can't tell from the crew and i am never sure but when i can see some of them is about to bust up, and they are fighting to keep from it i know it is working and that's because they know eac even other's stufd what will crack the other person up. it is like brothers playing with each other, something, so i really love what they can do. >> rose: at this table you expect all of these questions like how is comedy changing and the history of comedy but it does seem to me, john c riley said to me in the film it seems all of the great minds move to comedy. some of the smartest people i know some of the most politically engaged people i
know some of the most subversive people i know and compare that to some of the dramas that have come my way are a bit of a snooze to these guys, are really the people you want to work with. >> i think that is true to some extent. i find these guys like a lot of the other really, really funny people i worked with, their brains work differently, i feel, than people, other people and there is kind of an electricity that arcs a little faster and connects to ideas that are smart and layered and i certainly realize that. >> rose: is that something you learned or simply who we are. >> oh, it is who we are. [ laughter ] >> it really can't be learned. >> rose: well i am serious. >> it is really a gift. >> rose: i wanted to stay away from this because i knew i would get killed. >> not intentional killing.
you know, it is so hard for anybody to talk about comedy. >> rose: yes, it is. >> because to deconstruct it. >> rose: right. >> -- you pee feel like you are immediately taking something away from it. >> rose: i know. >> to evaluate, and i guess we all sort of do silently and sort of pick it apart. >> rose: take it apart silently. >> yes. >> rose: you have got to. i know people like steve martin go on and on and on in understanding what he wanted to do, not exactly how he did it but what he wanted to do. >> you hope you can reproduce it and figure it out. you know, you are sort of in this vacuum and you don't have the luxury of a live audience so you really don't get a sense, i mean we are the only bromers for whether it is funny or not and the crews and writers and the people in the room. >> rose: is there a common denominator among the three of you, among the people you know and like in the world of comedy? >> i would say we are all kind of drawn to these people, a lot
of people i work with are irreverent, it is comedy that is challenging or tries to go in a new direction, i have always found with a a lot of people that i have worked with and a lot of people my age, a lot of people that kind of stand up, we all gravitate toward -- i mean you just mentioned steve martin, it seems as if steve martin and a lot of his comedy records have been a common denominator with a lot of people i have worked with, they were a huge influence and -- >> rose: was it because he was breaking new ground and sort of making fun of everything? >> i don't know what. i was a kid and i am not a comedian but i remember thinking this is, oh, my god he is making a living talking. i mean, what a fun job. first of all. >> rose: i would like that myself. [ laughter ] >> but i think that there was something absurd about it. >> rose: right. >> and then at the same time
some of his references were philosophical references and it was very silly and stupid on one hand and incredibly pe perceptie and smart and brilliant in its absurdity. and i remember that having a huge impact on my life. i liked that more than any movie or actor or anything, steve martin. >> what is the common denominator of the movies you make. >> the one thing i always try to do i hope comes across in each one is have the look of it and the casting and everything sort of serve the style and sort of the concept of the movie and have it -- i try to make them fit uniquely to that one thing. but i was just following up on what paul was saying, i love working with people and these two guys are certainly examples of it that wanted to work on all levels, you know, to kind of get your funny bone and do something really silly and crazy, but also
have layers underneath it so you are sort of talking up to to the audience and maybe even connecting to a sentiment that, you know, people have something invested in the character and i think that is something i always reach for. >> rose: tell me about this movie, dinner for schmucks. >> as the story where paul rudd's character thinks he needs to impress his girlfriend and -- >> rose: there is a new idea. >> and to do so so he is getting a promotion and as a condition of the promotion he has to bring a special person to dinner and the person is supposed to know he is being made fun of, he brings steve carell who turns his life and the dinner completely upside down. >> this is a scene in which paul tries to find his back brace. >> i have a back brace in my bedroom, if you can just help me get off this couch. >> sure. >> i want to do this very slowly and chair any. >> uh-huh. >> on the do yo the count of 3.
>> ah! .. >> oh, if i can just -- >> you can do it. you have got it. oh, yeah! you got this! uh-huh! >> you look good. >> so tell me about the creation of that scene. >> >> we shot that for probably -- we shot variations of that for at least a at least a day and a half, just getting, just to do what? >> just for the physicality. because you never know. you never know what you are going to use or what is going to be needed, and i feel like part
of our job as actors is to give jay and the director and the editors as many different options as they can have, because, you know, in the final analysis you don't know what the movie should look like, you don't know tempo wise what you are going to need so we just gave all sorts of different options on physicality getting to the door. >> rose: it is actually one of the really exciting things i have found in the last few years working on comedies and working with this group of people and jay, this is the first time i have worked with jay, though i have always known jay and wanted to work with him, but there is this sense of freedom and kind of collaboration and -- and the was a scene that i thought would take, you know, a couple of hours to shoot, and then we would move on to the next thing, but this whole back pain and trying to get to the door it started to develop and jay said let's keep going in this direction. >> rose: one last clip. roll the tape. >> where are you from? >> we are from switzerlander land. >> you know what? we are going
to focus on business. >> switzerland, i love switzerland, it is one of my favorite countries, i love your army knives. with the toothpicks and your cheese. does the cheese come out of the cow with the holes? >> our countries are not enemies, they are friends. we are friends. >> you have been to switzerland? >> no but i have a friend who drives a volvo and i speak a little of your language. >> [ laughter ] >> rose: i have nothing to say. >> oh, yes you do. >> well, that scene was a lot -- they are all fun, but i was just -- i was staring into their eyes, david williams plays. >> this man. >> this swiss. i don't know, just rich -- i don't even know what he did for a living.
he is a rich swiss guy. he -- all of the actors in this movie took a lot of care with their characters. they really -- he was well -- you could speak to it better than i. he wanted him all in white. he wanted these light blue contacts, he wanted his wife to have light blue eyes and had a specific look in mind but i think it is funny but also i think very good character development. >> rose: the attitude that i saw in that scene -- >> from barry. >> yes from your character. >> completely ernest and someone who keeps digging himself deeper, into a terrible situation, makes it worse but is doing it as a complete innocent. >> rose: the last tape industry comes from the spoof that you guys did the other night at the espy awards.
would you explain this to me? >> well, paul -- >> it was a takeoff on lebron james's big dish and big interview. >> rose: right. >> and we just did a skit on that. about my big decision. it is essentially not as big of a decision as lebron. taken just as seriously. >> how hard was it to make this decision? >> in some ways it was incredibly hard and in other ways it was just very hard. and who had you already told about your decision? >> everybody. >> who haven't you told? >> just you. >> i am the only person on earth you haven't told? >> yes. did you tell vice president joe biden? >> i just got off the phone with him. >> what about little lane?
>> he is the first person i told. >> how about tito ortiz? >> i don't know who that is. >> he is an extreme fighter, he has a shaved head, wrestle add cow at bakersfield. >> yes, i told him. >> so i will be the last person you tell. >> not necessarily. i might not tell you. >> please tell. >> ask me again. >> please tell me. >> okay. i will tell you. i have decided -- i have decided i am going to take my appetite to the outback steakhouse. you will be eating dinner at the outback steakhouse? >> that is correct. >> and how do you explain that to the staff and management at chilly's. >> i had a good run with chile's and in a perfect workt i would eat at chile's constantly but tonight, there are no rules, just right, outback steakhouse.
>> rose: tell me, that is so good. it is so stupid too. >> but it is good. you know what? it is one of those things like we thought this might be pretty funny. this might get a laugh but you never know, you never know. >> rose: did you know -- at what point did you know you struck gold. >> when it got like 2 million hits on -- >> rose: that will tell you. when they showed it on charlie rose. that will tell you. it is going wide and deep. >> yes. it is weird. >> rose: how did it come into being? who wrote it? who what? >> well -- >> rose: and then rewrote it. >> it happened rather quickly, actually, and some of the guys, writers from saturday night live and seth myers was hosting the espys, and we had all just got, we got together, talked about this idea, because -- and then
we shot it i think 12 hours later, something like that, it was pretty quick. i mean the great thing was, there was a template already set in place, you know, we just kind of went with what was actually said. >> rose: what you saw on espn. >> but then w we would kind of p on it, we named so many different people, did you tell so and so and just think of who did you tell joe biden? did you tell joe biden and i stacked him and just sent him a fax, really you faxed him? >> yes, there is half an hour version of that. >> yes. somebody somewhere has the half hour version of that thing. it got more and more by starlike the estate of bob keisha n of captain kangaroo, and he had. he actually had, i think he had just spoken with him. right before.
>> so you had 30 minutes of material easily. >> i think we shot that in 31 minutes and we have probably a 30 minute take. why don't you edit out that one minute. >> rose: what does that mean once you got the swing and the rhythm and the template you could go on for an hour, just the talent you have. >> oh, i wouldn't go that -- you know what? it is one of those things that just kind of came together, and seemed to -- and it was timely and, you know, it had just come out, you know, this interview had just taken place, so people were salivating waiting for somebody to poke fun at it, so it was -- i think, again, it was just the timing of it worked out well. >> rose: do you think this hurt lebron at all? >> no. he called me. >> rose: what the hell are you talking about? >> very angry. >> oh, apparently, chile's has responded. >> rose: oh, really? >> they have come out with a
letter saying -- >> rose: really scathing letter towards steve, kind of doing the exact same thing that the cavaliers owner did toward lebron, and chile's was ripping steve apart and apologizing to its patrons saying we promise to deliver bold new flavors and it was really clever. >> rose: all tongue-in-cheek. >> but it was a random thing how we even came up with the restaurants. >> rose: chile's and outback. >> i don't think any thought went into it. sometimes that's the best thing too, when little or no thought goes into something, because it is true, though, sometimes when you have a chance to over analyze and think about it too much i think that can be a detriment. >> in comedy. >> absolutely. this we threw it against the wall and whatever stuck might be funny. >> but you had things in motion that made it -- >> for sure.
>> rose: now why are you leaving your show? >> >> you know what? i want to spend more time with my family. [ laughter ] >> can we do that. >> rose: we could done this with you leaving the show. why did you make this decision? >> wow, you are coming down on me. >> rose: who have you told? who else knows about this. >> i wanted to honor my contract. >> did you know about this? >> rose: does he have a family? >> a lovely family. >> i thought it was time. i just thought it was time. it was seven years and i wanted to on for my contract and it is tough. >> rose: because it works. >> because it works and a lot of my best friends work on the show, and, you know, it has been a big, big part of my life so it wasn't an easy decision to make but i just feel like now is the time. i actually think it will be good
for the show in the long run. >> rose: who will think that? >> you know i honestly think it will, it will switch it up and in fuse some new characters and freshen it, i think it would be a good thing. >> rose: so what are you going to do? >> i don't know. come back here. >> rose: you can always come back here. you can do this every night. but you will spend time with the family, of course. >> yes. that's my plan. >> what do they want you to do? >> they want me to go back to work. >> rose: i could be a straight man. so what is next for you? >> well,. >> rose: you are on the cover of gq. >> there you go. that is what i am hoping to find work at other magazines. >> rose: my god, this could be july fifth. >> yeah. >> yes. that is not gq.
>> rose: this is the thinking man's gq. >> well, yes. >> rose: improv king. on a new kind of comedy. how are you a new kind of comedy -- >> i don't know. i don't buy it. >> rose: you don't. >> no. >> rose: do you challenge this thesis? >> yes. >> he needed to write a long article and come up with an angle. >> rose: write in the new yorker you have to write a long article. >> a lot of words. >> rose: who has had the most influence on you? >> i would say steve martin had a huge influence. but what is it? i mean, there are lots of people whose answer to the question who has had a lot of influence, steve martin. >> well, as paul said before there was an absurdity to what he did that was both smart and silly at the same time, that's what i responded. >> rose: smart and silly at the same time. and a he took sort of the
dynamic of stand-up comedy and flipped it upside down. it was -- they were like anti-jokes that he would -- they were jokes that by themselves were not necessarily funny. it was in the delivery of them, and they were -- they were deconstructed in a certain way, and i just was fascinated by his -- i don't know. there was a completely different voice in my mind. it is something i had never seen before, and i was just fascinated by it. and i don't know. the coimmediatecally i would listen to his albums all the time .. in terms of like a comedic actor, you know, there are any number of people that were influences from jack lemmon to peter sellers, you know, something about appealing to a kid, you know, i remember monty python the twit of the year
competition, it was just so silly to see grownups and steve martin would have this too with an arrow through his head and getting happy feet and all of this, there is something about seeing a grownup behave so silly to a kid it is -- it was just mind-blowing to me. >> rose: influences? >> probably woody allen as much as anybody, annie hall especially, i was at that point in my life i could go either way and went to film school and monty python a lot of people -- really harold and maude when i saw that, again the commitment to the character and the delusional sort of delusional approach to life and compensating, coping with sad, dark things and it turns out delusion is healthy in some weird way, a compensatory coping thing, that kind of character, it is a little bit true of steve's character in this film, i am always a sucker for that.